The Botswana National Front (BNF) has moved swiftly to appoint a candidate for the anticipated Tlokweng constituency parliamentary bye-election. Kenneth Masego Segokgo of the BNF will represent the Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC).
“It is our pleasure and honour at the Botswana National Front (BNF), and on behalf of the Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC) and indeed our other comrades in the opposition, to announce the appointment of Cde Kenneth Masego Segokgo as UDC candidate for the anticipated 2017 Tlokweng Constituency Bye – Election.
According to BNF spokesperson, Justin Hunyepa, the choice of Cde Segokgo came after a marathon series of consultations within the Constituency. He says the Tlokweng Constituency, at the end of this process, came up with a credible, suitable and consensus candidate to represent the UDC in the Parliamentary bye-elections. The Constituency Committee has since communicated with other party structures as well as consulting the late Cde Bathobakae’s family, Hunyepa says.
“Cde Segokgo brings a lot of experience and priceless value to the Tlokweng Constituency and Botswana Parliament. He is currently the Tlokweng Constituency Chairperson, a position that further makes him suitable for the new assignment of area MP. He has been a Botswana National Front (BNF) member and activist for many years,” writes Hunyepa in his brief.
Cde Segokgo is a former educationist having qualified from the University of Botswana (UB) with a Bachelor of Science Degree (Education) in 1996, a scarce skills area in Botswana. He is a product of the then highly exclusive, elite and brain challenging pre-science course (PESC) at UB.
As a secondary school teacher for more than 10 years, he has contributed in Mater Spei College being one of the best performing schools in Botswana. He is therefore a reputable educationist. As an educationist, he has also contributed to national sports development as a BISA coach. Segokgo also worked for several years as a National Recruitment Coordinator at National Blood Transfusion Centre, running successful campaigns that led to a surplus in blood donations. Thousands of Batswana lives have been saved by this critical and sensitive national service centre, through Segokgo’s initiatives.
Hunyepa said Cde Segokgo is an accomplished businessman and therefore understands the Botswana business environment, at a time when business conditions are deteriorating as a result of the Botswana Democratic Party’s flawed economic policies.
“Cde Segokgo also did several professional courses locally and internationally, including Quality Management Systems; Advanced First Aid; International Forum for Health Promotion; Blood Donor Recruitment; Monitoring and Evaluation on HIV/AIDS programmes; Customer Service; etc.
He is not only an effective communicator, but is also responsible, truthful, tolerant, approachable, reliable and above all is ready to serve the Constituency and the nation at large. Cde Segokgo will definitely add value in both Parliament and Constituency with his broad experience across the socio-economic fields of education, health, sports, business and politics.”
Hunyepa writes: “The party therefore confidently presents to you the most credible candidate for the Tlokweng Constituency. The party further appreciates the spirit in which the structures peacefully handled the selection process. The BNF therefore endorses the people’s choice and with confidence, presents Cde Segokgo to the united opposition (UDC and BCP) and the ever supportive working class. Batlokwa, Tlokweng residents, including the civic society and all other comrades are called upon to rally behind Cde Segokgo and cast a vote for him so as to elect an MP who will serve with dedication.”
While there is no hard-and-fast rule in politics, former Molepolole North Member of Parliament, Mohamed Khan says populism acts in the body politic have forced him to quit active partisan politics. He brands this ancient ascription of politics as fake and says it lowers the moral compass of the society.
Khan who finally tasted political victory in the 2014 elections after numerous failed attempts, has decided to leave the ‘dirty game’, and on his way out he characteristically lashed at the current political leaders; including his own party president, Advocate Duma Boko. “I arrived at this decision because I have noticed that there are no genuine politics and politicians. The current leaders, Boko and President Dr Mokgweetsi Masisi are fake politicians who are just practicing populist politics to feed their egos,” he said.
Former Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) parliamentary hopeful, Lawrence Ookeditse has rejected the idea of taking up a crucial role in the Botswana Patriotic Front (BPF) Central Committee following his arrival in the party this week. According to sources close to development, BPF power brokers are coaxing Ookeditse to take up the secretary general position, left vacant by death of Roseline Panzirah-Matshome in November 2020.
Ookeditse’s arrival at BPF is projected to cause conflicts, as some believe they are being overlooked, in favour of a new arrival. The former ruling party strategist has however ruled out the possibility of serving in the party central committee as secretary general, and committed that he will turn down the overture if availed to him by party leadership.
Ookeditse, nevertheless, has indicated that if offered another opportunity to serve in a different capacity, he will gladly accept. “I still need to learn the party, how it functions and all its structures; I must be guided, but given any responsibility I will serve the party as long as it is not the SG position.”
“I joined the BPF with a clear conscious, to further advance my voice and the interests of the constituents of Nata/Gweta which I believe the BDP is no longer capable to execute.” Ookeditse speaks of abject poverty in his constituency and prevalent unemployment among the youth, issues he hopes his new home will prioritise.
He dismissed further allegations that he resigned from the BDP because he was not rewarded for his efforts towards the 2019 general elections. After losing in the BDP primaries in 2018, Ookeditse said, he was offered a job in government but declined to take the post due to his political ambitions. Ookeditse stated that he rejected the offer because, working for government clashed with his political journey.
He insists there are many activists who are more deserving than him; he could have chosen to take up the opportunity that was before him but his conscious for the entire populace’s wellbeing held him back. Ookeditse said there many people in the party who also contributed towards party success, asserting that he only left the BDP because he was concerned about the greater good of the majority not individualism purposes.
According to observers, Ookeditse has been enticed by the prospects of contesting Nata/Gweta constituency in the 2024 general election, following the party’s impressive performance in the last general elections. Nata/Gweta which is a traditional BDP stronghold saw its numbers shrinking to a margin of 1568. BDP represented by Polson Majaga garnered 4754, while BPF which had fielded Joe Linga received 3186 with UDC coming a distant with 1442 votes.
There are reports that Linga will pave way for Ookeditse to contest the constituency in 2024 and the latter is upbeat about the prospects of being elected to parliament. Despite Ookeditse dismissing reports that he is eying the secretary general position, insiders argue that the position will be availed to him nevertheless.
Alternative favourite for the position is Vuyo Notha who is the party Deputy Secretary General. Notha has since assumed duties of the secretariat office on the interim basis. BPF politburo is expected to meet on 25th of January 2020, where the vacancy will be filled.
Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) big wigs have decided to cancel a retreat with the party legislators this weekend owing to increasing numbers of Covid-19 cases. The meeting was billed for this weekend at a place that was to be confirmed, however a communique from the party this past Tuesday reversed the highly anticipated meeting.
“We received a communication this week that the meeting will not go as planned because of rapid spread of Covid-19,” one member of the party Central Committee confirmed to this publication. The gathering was to follow the first of its kind held late last year at party Treasurer Satar Dada’s place.